Family Travel: Double the Zoos in Boston, Flickr: cleopold73

 A Lion at Franklin Park Zoo!


Located within just nine miles of each other, the Boston area boasts two fabulous zoos for families seeking an exciting animal adventure.   Since both zoos operate under the authority of Zoo New England, a commonality and non-competitive spirit allows guests to enjoy the variety without compromise.

The Franklin Park Zoo is located on 72-acres within Boston’s Franklin Park.  Founded in 1912, the zoo features numerous animal exhibits and encounters.  The Tropical Forest takes families inside a rain forest where they can encounter hundreds of animals, including a family of eight gorillas visible through one of five different glass viewing stations.  Other animals in the Tropical Forest include mandrills, lemurs, tapirs, hippopotamus and free-flight birds.

Giraffe Savannah boasts two giraffes (who live indoors in the harsh winters), and a herd of zebras.  If you are visiting in the summer, sign up for a giraffe feeding encounter.  For just $5, you can feed these beautiful creatures!  Spaces fill up quickly, so be sure to arrive early and get on the list.

In Kalaari Kingdom, kids can pretend they are safari survivors getting a peak at magnificent lions by peering out from a safari vehicle.  A large open grassland called Serengeti Crossing allows African Savannah species such as ostrich, zebras and wildebeests to interact with each other as they would in the wild.

Additional exhibits include Tiger Tales, boasting both standard and white tigers, Birds World, Butterfly Landing, and the Outback Trail which boasts animals from down under.  The Aussie Aviary, located on the Outback Trail, sells bird food allowing for free flight birds to swoop down and enjoy a tasty treat right from your hand.

If your kids need a place to get some energy out while visiting the zoo, head to the new playground feature that just opened this summer.  The 10,000sf playground located next to Butterfly Landing features slides, climbing structures and interactive components.  If they need a bit more thrills, take them aboard the train, carousel or safari jeep rides (at an additional cost). Two on-site restaurants offer family-friendly fare, but as always, families may bring in outside lunches to take advantage of numerous picnic tables.

The Stone Zoo, located in Stoneham, MA, just nine miles away from Franklin Park was founded in 1905.  It is a significantly smaller zoo, operating on just 26-acres.

A variety of different animals are featured in this zoo.  Yukon Creek features animals native to Canada including bald eagles, reindeer and black bears!  While visiting the Treasures of the Sierra Madre exhibit, you can check out big cats and dogs like jaguars, cougars and coyotes.   The Himalayan Highlands feature snow leopards, mountain goats and yaks.  The Window to the Wild and Gibbon exhibits offers a glimpse at smaller animals such as meerkats, porcupines, and of course, the gibbon.

The Barnyard is a favorite amongst children.  Here they can walk amongst, pet, and feed friendly sheep, goats, and other farm animals.

Stone Zoo is located at 149 Pond Street in Stoneham, MA.  Franklin Park Zoo is located at One Franklin Park Road in Boston.  The 1st Saturday of the month, adults get it at the kid price.

Expering the ‘roaring side’ of Beantown and book your Boston family vacation today!

Featured image “Lion” by Corey Leopold is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

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